Bill Browder: Russia has always been a dangerous place to do business

Channel: Fox Business
Published: 05/08/2019 09:24 PM

FOX Business’ Liz Claman interviews “Red Notice” author Bill Browder about why investors should stay away from Russia. FOX Business Network (FBN) is a financial news channel delivering real-time information across all platforms that impact both Main Street and Wall Street. Headquartered in New...

We have this anita's morgan stanley is planning to shutter its banking business in russia by 2020. The company says us, and european sanctions are just making it too hard for business in russia to access global capital markets, but there's a much bigger issue. Vladimir putin is throwing americans who work there in prison, their meaning in different companies. The man who ran the largest hedge fund ...
in russia is here bill crowder, but don't ask him whether you should set up a mutual or hedge fund in russia. He barely escaped him by the skin of his teeth after growing his hermitage capital fund in moscow to five billion dollars, but in 2009 his lawyers, sergei magnitsky, uncovereda massive tax fraud committed by russian government officials, magnitsky, was arrested, tortured and beaten to death in a moscow Prison bill browder is still wanted today by vladimir putin, but he's here with us and joins us first on fox business. Not only does he want, you he's asked interpol seven times to grab you anytime, you travel and send you to russia. So not just once not twice but seven times. I was arrested last summer in madrid and i was going to madrid to give evidence to the spanish prosecutor about putin's money-laundering crimes in spain, and i got grabbed on a russian interpol arrest warrant then, and they, most recently after the european union, started talkingabout sanctioning russia Named after my lawyer, sergei mirminsky, they issued a 7th request to interpol and what's happening this week or tomorrow you say, is interpol? Actually, considering you back on the red notice list, interpol is actively considering it at the 7th request. After rejecting the first six as being a legitimate and politically motivated, this thing will not travel it. What are you going to do here? No, i'm traveling, but i only travel to countries that i believe have a rule of law. It'S almost as if russia is doubling down. If you look at what's happening to american business executives there, there are two currently who are in prison: who've been nabbed, who knows: whatcharges espionage, paul whelan and michael calvi.

What does the overall message of these new arrests? Tell you of how dangerous it is to do business in russia. Basically, russia has always been a dangerous place to do business, but it's gotten more dangerous. Now putin doesn't care what it looks like from the outside. You risk not just losing your money, but in these two cases as you've seen you risk going to jail and when you go to russian jail. This is not. This is like the one of the worst jails in the world. As you mentioned in your introduction, sergei magnitsky, my lawyer, was, was tortured to death in a russian jail in 2009 working forthe largest foreign investor in russia, but people here are all just looking to make a buck. Do they come up to you and say? Oh, i can do what you couldn't accomplish and what do you tell them about if they're interested in going to russia to do business, i tell them that russia is uninvested. I say that it's completely uninvested you shouldn't. Go there don't risk your money, don't risk your life. I don't think anyone here is thinking about going to russia and setting up an investment fund. You did something very few.

Civilians have ever done. You lobbied congress and got a bill passed and made into law. The magnitsky act, which of course, slapsall kinds of sanctions and eliminates visas and freezes assets on you, know russians and anybody who's accused of the human rights violations. I have to ask you, though, because you've told me in the past that the trump administration, the administration overall, has been wait. Uh fur than the past three presidents on the russians when it comes to sanctions, and yet he just had a phone call a friday ago with vladimir putin for 19 minutes that he initiated apparently. And how does how do you square the relationship he has with how tough the administration has been? Well, i have to revisit that the tough administration point every year in december, the us government adds more peopleto. The magnitsky list last december was the first time since the law was passed that the government, the us government, the trump administration, has not added anybody or even reported to congress, which they're required to do under the law. What they're doing on the magnitsky list, and so now we're in a situation where i hope that they come out and show their cards and show that they are could continue to be tough, because i've always believed that the administration is full of clear-headed people about russia. In in terms of sanctions and in terms of vladimir putin, putin apparently told president trump. I don't want to do anything bad in venezuela. That'S was an outright liewe. They send in hundreds of troops, to support maduro as he was about to fall and in fact i would, i would speculate that maduro would have how already fallen had had had the russians not been there, and - and this is just what the russians did in syria - There there are hundreds of thousands of dead people in syria and millions of refugees, because the russians went in and supported assad yeah.

I i don't believe putin when he says oh he's magnanimous when it comes to venezuela. One last thing: what kind of tentacles does this? Guy have a beluga whale was discovered off the coast of norway and it had a russian-made of harness around itas if they were training it by the russian navy. We have some pictures of this. I mean what's going on there and does he want world domination? Well, he's never going to achieve world domination. His economy is the size of the state of new york. His military budget is 90 % less than the united states, but but he's poking around where it's cheap he's poking around you know i don't know how much it costs to train a whale, but it's it's not hundreds of millions of dollars bill. I loved your book. Read notice, but let me just say - and you know this - he does not like you, he would like you not to be alive whatis, your biggest fear. Well, my biggest fear right now is being arrested as i cross a border on a russian arrest warrant and having a country that's compliant with putin hand me over. If i get handed over to the russian government, i will be killed bill browder. Let'S, let's make sure that never happens? Thank you so much. Thank you.

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